In 1969, Broker in Charge Gairy Nichols' father, W. G. “Billy” Nichols, Jr., purchased McElveen Realty in Garden City Beach, and later changed the name to Dunes Realty. A small business sold real estate and rented out just 20 beach cottages to vacationers. During high school summer breaks, Gairy worked at Dunes by cleaning, maintaining and repairing the vacation homes. After graduating from Wofford College with a BS in Economics in 1975, he joined the business full-time, and together with his Dad and Rod Swaim, they put all of their effort into being the best real estate company in South Carolina. By now, they had expanded to a small staff, managing 150 beach houses, and it took six and half days of work each week to get the job done. This was in a day and time where Sunday was not a “work day”. By 1977, as it became evident that their efforts were paying off, Gairy’s Dad purchased another real estate company in Litchfield Beach, 10 miles south of Garden City Beach.
Upon Billy’s sudden death in 1979, Gairy became a partner and for the next 30 years, the business grew as development along South Carolina’s coast soared.
While the entire landscape of Myrtle Beach has changed over the years, the family atmosphere of the South Strand remains. Today, Gairy and Rod are still partners, and together they oversee Dunes Realty and continue to exhibit those same values, work ethics and commitments to their clients and customers. Never having had the desire to expand to the greater Myrtle Beach area or beyond, such dedication to the specific beaches of Garden City, Surfside and Murrells Inlet has made them experts in the area.
Because of their persistence to excellence, service and customer satisfaction, Gairy and Rod have set the standard in resort real estate companies and as a result, they rent to more vacationing families than any other real estate company on the Grand Strand.